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A book by any other name would smell as sweet

11 July 2012

Thursday 21 June, BP Lecture Theatre, British Museum

Dr Matija Strlic (UCL Centre for Sustainable Heritage)

Few people would fail to recognise the bittersweet and musty smell of a historic library, yet not many would know that this bouquet also tells us what heritage objects are made of. To the heritage scientist, it is intensity of smells that often reveals how quickly objects decay, and the development of breathalysers for this purpose may help in their conservation. This lecture discusses how sniffing objects can thus reveal crucial information, and how smell is also part of an object’s history and part of how we enjoy our heritage.

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